OK. I've not been posting much the last few weeks, my reason? I've had some tough news that took me away from home. My Grandmother died the second week in January which I feel quite justified in describing as a shock to say the least.
I'm not someone who really finds dealing with death difficult, I view it as part of life, and a natural conclusion, but this time I admit did take it quite badly. Its the first bereavement I've suffered since I've lived away from my hometown and the distance from my family when it happened suddenly felt far greater than it normal. The funeral wasn't held until the first week in February, so at least I had some time to get organised.
I was dreading the trip, my Parents were over and a number of the distant family were making the effort to attend too, so it had the opportunity to be difficult. Thankfully I was pleasantly surprised by the whole thing...
We hired a car and drove the 370 miles to Norwich, Arnold Clark had kindly given me a free upgrade on my hire car (from a Kia Picanto to a Peugeot 207) which made the trip a huge amount more comfortable. Arriving late afternoon on the Saturday there was some commotion among my friends about going out. It didn't really take much persuading to be honest as the club I used to frequent often was having its 10th anniversary so I felt compelled to go for nostalgia's sake if nothing else. I'm glad we did as I had a fab time, and got to show B-Man what the Norwich alternative scene is like in comparison to Edinburgh. (I think he was impressed, at least with half of it!) I did however mange to slip over on the ice and bang my head! Thankfully, I got a little bruising and swelling but no black eye!
We had a few days to spare, so did the obligatory family visits, and even managed to squeeze in a night round at an old friends before the funeral. (note: when I say old friends, I haven't seen Jerry and Jo for about 5 years now so you can image the look on their faces when I walked into their front room unannounced!)
The funeral itself was actually lovely, my Nan would have been so proud of all the commotion caused in her name - she did love a big show! There was a horse drawn hearse, four funeral cars and a massive trail of followers on the way to the crematorium. It took over an hour to drive just 6 miles! After the ceremony my parents had organised for a white dove to be released which I think possibly made Grandads year as he is a huge bird lover, and he got to hold it before setting it free. Afterwards there was a reception, and it was really nice to catch up with some of the family. Especially my cousin David who moved to Australia 20 years ago (although I could have done without being reminded that at the age of 6 I had a massive crush on him!)
Its so true that it takes a wedding or a funeral to get people together, but it does remind me that I do actually have a big family out there who care.